Indian Tales

Front Cover
U. S. Book Company, 1890 - India - 771 pages
"Or ever the knightly years were gone With the old world to the grave, I was a king in Babylon And you were a Christian slave," -W.E. Henley. His name was Charlie Mears; he was the only son of his mother who was a widow, and he lived in the north of London, coming into the City every day to work in a bank. He was twenty years old and suffered from aspirations. I met him in a public billiard-saloon where the marker called him by his given name, and he called the marker "Bullseyes." Charlie explained, a little nervously, that he had only come to the place to look on, and since looking on at games of skill is not a cheap amusement for the young, I suggested that Charlie should go back to his mother. That was our first step toward better acquaintance. He would call on me sometimes in the evenings instead of running about London with his fellow-clerks; and before long, speaking of himself as a young man must, he told me of his aspirations, which were all literary. He desired to make himself an undying name chiefly through verse, though he was not above sending stories of love and death to the drop-a-penny-in-the-slot journals.

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User Review  - RajivC - LibraryThing

While, in general, I like Rudyard Kipling's writing, the quality of the stories in this book is patchy. That's my assessment. Some stories have power; some have pathos, and others were a bit muddled ... Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

As an Indian, I must admit that Kipling's views on the British Raj and on Indians themselves are highly racialist in nature. However, that does not take away from the exuberance of his writing. His many tales regarding Learoyd, Ortheris and Mulvaney make one feel as if one is part of that exciting group, while his spooky and mystical stories are beautifully penned. Although he does not understand Indians, he does understand India and I have never come across another English-language writer who describes India as accurately as Mr. Kipling. Whether he is talking about the Thar Desert, the great Himalayas, or the bustling northern cities, his words create an evocative picture. 

Contents

I
7
II
14
III
19
IV
30
V
37
VI
43
VII
53
VIII
60
XXXVIII
272
XXXIX
278
XL
288
XLI
298
XLII
307
XLIII
318
XLIV
328
XLV
345

IX
66
X
73
XI
80
XII
87
XIII
92
XIV
99
XV
105
XVI
112
XVII
118
XVIII
124
XIX
131
XX
141
XXI
148
XXII
155
XXIII
163
XXIV
168
XXV
176
XXVI
183
XXVII
190
XXVIII
197
XXIX
205
XXX
217
XXXI
224
XXXII
230
XXXIII
237
XXXIV
245
XXXV
254
XXXVI
258
XXXVII
265
XLVI
356
XLVII
376
XLVIII
392
XLIX
403
L
413
LI
419
LII
429
LIII
441
LIV
452
LV
463
LVI
489
LVII
515
LVIII
524
LIX
550
LX
590
LXI
602
LXII
634
LXIII
646
LXIV
682
LXV
693
LXVI
704
LXVII
715
LXVIII
726
LXIX
736
LXX
750
LXXI
760
LXXII
771
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Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 506 - Singing and murmuring in her feastful mirth, Joying to feel herself alive, Lord over Nature, Lord of the visible earth, Lord of the senses five ; Communing with herself : ' All these are mine, And let the world have peace or wars, Tis one to me.
Page 676 - Some talk of Alexander, And some of Hercules ; Of Hector and Lysander, And such great names as these...
Page 601 - BAA BAA, BLACK SHEEP. BAA Baa, Black Sheep, Have you any wool ? Yes, Sir, yes, Sir, three bags full.
Page 634 - Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?
Page 550 - I have been fellow to a beggar again and again under circumstances which prevented either of us finding out whether the other was worthy. I have still to be brother to a Prince, though I once came near to kinship with what might have been a veritable King and was promised the reversion of a Kingdom — army, law-courts, revenue, and policy all complete. But, to-day, I greatly fear that my King is dead, and if I want a crown I must go and hunt it for myself.
Page 760 - If thou hast run with the footmen, and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? and if in the land of peace, wherein thou trustedst, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of Jordan?
Page 582 - I wished then that we had explained about the loss of the genuine secrets of a Master-Mason at the first go-off; but I said nothing. All that night there was a blowing of horns in a little dark temple half-way down the hill, and I heard a girl crying fit to die. One of the priests told us that she was being prepared to marry the King. " ' I'll have no nonsense of that kind,
Page 723 - For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands ; even as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord ; whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.
Page 600 - Up the hill under which Wee Willie Winkie's Bad Men were discussing the wisdom of carrying off the child and the girl, a look-out fired two shots. "What have I said?
Page 155 - A MAN should, whatever happens, keep to his own caste, race and breed. Let the White go to the White and the Black to the Black.

About the author (1890)

Kipling, who as a novelist dramatized the ambivalence of the British colonial experience, was born of English parents in Bombay and as a child knew Hindustani better than English. He spent an unhappy period of exile from his parents (and the Indian heat) with a harsh aunt in England, followed by the public schooling that inspired his "Stalky" stories. He returned to India at 18 to work on the staff of the Lahore Civil and Military Gazette and rapidly became a prolific writer. His mildly satirical work won him a reputation in England, and he returned there in 1889. Shortly after, his first novel, The Light That Failed (1890) was published, but it was not altogether successful. In the early 1890s, Kipling met and married Caroline Balestier and moved with her to her family's estate in Brattleboro, Vermont. While there he wrote Many Inventions (1893), The Jungle Book (1894-95), and Captains Courageous (1897). He became dissatisfied with life in America, however, and moved back to England, returning to America only when his daughter died of pneumonia. Kipling never again returned to the United States, despite his great popularity there. Short stories form the greater portion of Kipling's work and are of several distinct types. Some of his best are stories of the supernatural, the eerie and unearthly, such as "The Phantom Rickshaw," "The Brushwood Boy," and "They." His tales of gruesome horror include "The Mark of the Beast" and "The Return of Imray." "William the Conqueror" and "The Head of the District" are among his political tales of English rule in India. The "Soldiers Three" group deals with Kipling's three musketeers: an Irishman, a Cockney, and a Yorkshireman. The Anglo-Indian Tales, of social life in Simla, make up the larger part of his first four books. Kipling wrote equally well for children and adults. His best-known children's books are Just So Stories (1902), The Jungle Books (1894-95), and Kim (1901). His short stories, although their understanding of the Indian is often moving, became minor hymns to the glory of Queen Victoria's empire and the civil servants and soldiers who staffed her outposts. Kim, an Irish boy in India who becomes the companion of a Tibetan lama, at length joins the British Secret Service, without, says Wilson, any sense of the betrayal of his friend this actually meant. Nevertheless, Kipling has left a vivid panorama of the India of his day. In 1907, Kipling became England's first Nobel Prize winner in literature and the only nineteenth-century English poet to win the Prize. He won not only on the basis of his short stories, which more closely mirror the ambiguities of the declining Edwardian world than has commonly been recognized, but also on the basis of his tremendous ability as a popular poet. His reputation was first made with Barrack Room Ballads (1892), and in "Recessional" he captured a side of Queen Victoria's final jubilee that no one else dared to address.

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